The first Queen Elizabeth prize for Engineering has been awarded to five creators of the internet and web, Robert Kahn, Vint Cerf, Louis Pouzin, Tim Berners-Lee and Marc Andreessen.

Kahn, Cerf and Pouzin were recognised for their contributions to the protocols that underpin the internet's fundamental architecture.

Berners-Lee was included because of his landmark work to create the world wide web, while Andreesen's creation of the Mosaic web browser was also celebrated.

The judges noted that the creation of the internet had been one of the most revolutionary engineering feats of modern times, with a third of the world’s population using the internet.

The judging panel noted the five winners' work had “revolutionised the way we communicate and enabled to development of whole new industries”.

The £1m prize winners were selected by an eminent panel of judges, including professor Brian Cox, and VMWare founder and now Google director, Dianne Greene.

The announcement was made at the Royal Academy of Engineering at a ceremony attended by The Princess Royal.